A long motorcycle ride on very old motorcycles is the near future for Doobie Brother guitarist Pat Simmons and his wife, Cris Sommer Simmons. On the August 20th, the pair will depart from the Sturgis Motorcycle Museum in Sturgis, South Dakota, and head 1,000 miles east to the Harley-Davidson Museum in Milwaukee, Wisconsin to help Harley-Davidson celebrate their 110th Anniversary. Cris will be riding Effie, her 1915 Harley-Davidson twin motorcycle, and Pat will ride Vinnie, his 1914 Harley two speed. The first Harley-Davidson motorcycle was built in 1903 and 110 years later the legendary brand is still an American icon.
“We’ve always been Harley people, that’s what brought us together”, say’s Cris, three time motorcycle hall of fame inductee, published author and motorcycle journalist. Literally, since they actually met at a Harley-Davidson event in Sturgis in 1989. “We were introduced by a mutual friend, who happened to be a marketing executive for Harley-Davidson” Pat adds “Our mutual love of motorcycles, riding, and the lifestyle, drew us to one another, and we’ve been together ever since.”
This year the couple will celebrate 24 years together riding their nearly 100 year-old motorcycles to Milwaukee, where Pat, guitar player and singer with the legendary band The Doobie Brothers will perform with the band at the event on August 29th. “The Doobies have a long history with Harley-Davidson. Besides riding, we have been performing at their events, and biker parties for over 40 years. We love motorcycling, and the people who ride. It’s such an honor to be part the Harley-Davidson family, and the 110th Anniversary celebration, and we plan to rock in overdrive that night!”
Cris will be making an appearance at the Harley-Davidson Museum on August 30th, at 2pm, where she will talk about her experiences and we be signing copies of her three books afterwards. “We’re not sure what to expect as we roll the 1,000 miles or so from Sturgis to Milwaukee, but we’re excited. Cris has already done this, and more on Effie. She rode cross- country on the 3330 mile Motorcycle Cannonball run in 2010. I’ve never ridden this far on a motorcycle so old. It’ll be a new experience for me”, said Pat “I know this will be a ride to remember.”